Spirit and Tradition

For 116 years YMCA Camp Cormorant has offered spirit, tradition, leadership and exceptional facilities to campers. Cormorant provides a unique outdoor environment with cozy cabins, athletic fields, a sand volleyball court, horse trails, an extensive beach front, full meal service, and much more to enhance the camping experience.

In an effort to grow our facilities and programs to serve children and families for the next generation, the YMCA of Cass and Clay Counties is building a Welcome Center at Camp Cormorant.

The Welcome Center, which will be located at the entrance of camp near the ropes course, will enhance the camper experience by providing a central gathering location year round. It will provide year-round service with heating and cooling sources and will provide a safe and clean place for youth to play on rainy days.

The YMCA of Cass and Clay Counties goal is to raise $1.5 million for the project. Currently we have raised $1.25 million and we need your support to raise the additional $250,000. Join us in supporting the spirit and tradition of Camp Cormorant!

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Camp Welcome Center Brochure

A Brief History

  • In 1903, the YMCA purchased property on Big Cormorant Lake to build Camp Cormorant, one of the country’s oldest resident camps. By 1915, camp included four sleeping tents, a dining tent, a kitchen shack and a wash bench. Camp had no electricity.
  • In the 1930s, five cabins were added to camp. Activities at that time included hiking, ping pong, swimming, track meets, tennis and more.
  • The 50th Anniversary of camp was celebrated in 1953 with new cabins, new boats and the addition of ponies at camp. At that time, one week at camp cost $15 for Y members and $17 for non-members. Candy Sales helped youth pay their way.
  • In the 1960s, girls were allowed to start attending certain weeks at camp. In addition, the Rec building and family camp were added.
  • In the 1990s, many new features were added including a high and low ropes course and water trampoline. In addition, the beach front was expanded.
  • In 2003, Camp Cormorant celebrated its Centennial with an event filled weekend, including the burial of a time capsule.




Current Impact

Camp Cormorant continues to provide just the right setting to encourage a camper’s mental, physical and spiritual growth. Our camp mission is to provide a safe, enjoyable, creative and challenging camping opportunity that fosters individual growth in the areas of self-esteem, responsibility, communication, independence, leadership, environmental awareness and Christian values.

• 2015 had a record-breaking year, with over 1,100 youth in attendance for full-sessions.

• Included in that number is 130 campers from Camp Kace, which has been held at Camp Cormorant for 8 years. Camp Kace hosts youth with cancer and their siblings.

• In addition, Camp Cormorant hosted 1,250 youth from YMCA Day Camps, YMCA Child Care and Family Wellness Day Camps for field trips throughout the summer.

• Because of funds raised through the YMCA’s Annual Campaign, 299 campers were on scholarship in 2018.


A Timeline of Photos

For more information, contact:

Steve Smith